The Panthers’ Jack Taylor (#23) and Jonah Ragsdale (#20) tag-team an unidentified Westshore Wolves’ forward in Vancouver Island Junior Hockey League action Friday night as the Panthers won 6-2. (Gordon Lee/Submitted)

The Panthers’ Jack Taylor (#23) and Jonah Ragsdale (#20) tag-team an unidentified Westshore Wolves’ forward in Vancouver Island Junior Hockey League action Friday night as the Panthers won 6-2. (Gordon Lee/Submitted)

Peninsula Panthers seize league lead by winning two out of three

The Vancouver Island Junior Hockey League club becomes first team with 50 points

The Peninsula Panthers cracked the big 5-0 over the weekend and remain in the penthouse of the Vancouver Island Junior Hockey League (VIJHL) on points.

After winning two out of three games in five days, the Panthers find themselves with 50 points, one ahead of the Victoria Cougars, who own the league’s highest winning percentage, having played three fewer games.

This said, the Panthers’ performance pleased head coach Brad Tippett, who credited his team with playing with passion, determination and good execution.

“Special teams succeeded at critical times and we got key saves at critical times,” he said. “This group sticks up for each other, helps each other, and are committed in not letting the others down. We knew seven-game December would be our toughest month. Playing two more games with similar passion will hopefully give the players a very happy Christmas break.”

RELATED: Peninsula Panthers jump into first place with win over arch-rivals Victoria Cougars

The Panthers opened the recent run of games with a 3-2 road loss to the Westshore Wolves but gained a measure of revenge Friday when they cruised to a 6-2 home victory against those same Wolves. The Panthers led 5-0 halfway through the second period, only to lose concentration as the Wolves scored twice to narrow the gap. But late in the period, rookie Luc Pelletier stopped the Wolves’ comeback with the Panthers’ final goal of the evening. The Panthers then capped off the weekend with 3-1 road victory against the Oceanside Generals in Parksville with goalie Connor McKillop claiming his league-leading 19th victory following Friday’s victory.

Sunday’s win moved the Panthers to the 50-point plateau with the team showing no signs of slowing as they prepare for their last two games before taking a 12-day Christmas break. The Panthers will look to maintain their mastery over opponents from the North Division Friday when they travel to Campbell River where they will look for the 15th victory in 15 games against opponents from that division. Their final game before the break will take them to Saanich where they face the Braves Sunday afternoon.

The Panthers’ next home will be Jan. 3 when they welcome the Cougars in what promises to be the most important game of the regular season thus far.


Like us on Facebook and follow @wolfgang_depner

wolfgang.depner@peninsulanewsreview.com

Panthers

Just Posted

University of Victoria researchers received more than $9 million from the federal government for projects that aim to advance big ideas, discoveries and innovations. (Photo courtesy of UVic)
University of Victoria research boosted with more than $9 million in federal funding

The research funding will support a wide range of projects and study

Two volunteers work to sieve a sample of sand and ocean water through a filter, capturing any potential microplastics. (Courtesy of Ocean Diagnostics)
Victoria startup making waves in microplastics research

New products from Ocean Diagnostics will make research faster, more affordable

Island Savings kick-starts the Equipped to Heal campaign with $120,000. (Courtesy Victoria Hospitals Foundation)
Latest Victoria Hospitals Foundation campaign targets $1M for mental health

Goal is to outfit new 19-bed unit at Eric Martin Pavilion

Willows Beach in Oak Bay. (Black Press Media file photo)
Seven days of sun set to shine on Greater Victoria

Special weather statement warns of higher than usual temperatures

Hot rods, rad rods, muscle and sports cars spanning the decades made their way in a parade from North Saanich to Victoria on June 19. (Kiernan Green/News Staff)
PHOTOS: Classic cars cruise Saanich Peninsula in advance of Father’s Day

Retirement home residents from North Saanich to Victoria treated to a spectacle of hot rides

Jesse Roper tackles weeds in his garden to kick off the 2021 season of What’s In My Garden Man? (YouTube/Whats In My Garden)
VIDEO: Metchosin singer-songwriter Jesse Roper invites gardeners into his plot

What’s In My Garden, Man? kicks off with the poop on compost

FILE – Most lanes remain closed at the Peace Arch border crossing into the U.S. from Canada, where the shared border has been closed for nonessential travel in an effort to prevent the spread of the coronavirus, Thursday, May 7, 2020, in Blaine, Wash. The restrictions at the border took effect March 21, while allowing trade and other travel deemed essential to continue. (AP Photo/Elaine Thompson)
Feds to issue update on border measures for fully vaccinated Canadians, permanent residents

Border with U.S. to remain closed to most until at least July 21

A portion of the George Road wildfire burns near Lytton, B.C. in this Friday, June 18, 2021 handout photo. THE CANADIAN PRESS/HO, BC Wildfire Service *MANDATORY CREDIT*
Blaze near Lytton spread across steep terrain, says BC Wildfire Service

Fire began Wednesday and is suspected to be human-caused, but remains under investigation

Blair Lebsack, owner of RGE RD restaurant, poses for a portrait in the dining room, in Edmonton, Friday, June 18, 2021. Canadian restaurants are having to find ways to deal with the rising cost of food. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jason Franson
Canadian restaurateurs grapple with rising food costs, menu prices expected to rise

Restaurants are a low margin industry, so there’s not a lot of room to work in additional costs

A Lotto 6/49 ticket purchased in Parksville for the June 19, 2021 draw is a $3M winner. (Submitted photo)
Winning Lotto 6/49 ticket worth $3M purchased on Vancouver Island

Lottery prize winners have 52 weeks to claim jackpot

Cpl. Scott MacLeod and Police Service Dog Jago. Jago was killed in the line of duty on Thursday, June 17. (RCMP)
Abbotsford police, RCMP grieve 4-year-old service dog killed in line of duty

Jago killed by armed suspect during ‘high-risk’ incident in Alberta

The George Road wildfire near Lytton, B.C., has grown to 250 hectares. (BC Wildfire Service)
B.C. drone sighting halts helicopters fighting 250 hectares of wildfire

‘If a drone collides with firefighting aircraft the consequences could be deadly,’ says BC Wildfire Service

Barbara Violo, pharmacist and owner of The Junction Chemist Pharmacy, draws up a dose behind vials of both Pfizer-BioNTech and Oxford-AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccines on the counter, in Toronto, Friday, June 18, 2021. An independent vaccine tracker website founded by a University of Saskatchewan student says just over 20 per cent of eligible Canadians — those 12 years old and above — are now fully vaccinated. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Nathan Denette
At least 20% of eligible Canadians fully vaccinated, 75% with one dose: data

Earlier projections for reopening at this milestone didn’t include Delta variant

Most Read